A friend of mine asked me that question the other night at dinner, and I could feel my little girl inside giving a feisty answer, “No, never! You can’t make me!”
My friend was asking whether the goal of inner child therapy is for the child to become a grownup. Interestingly, her point of reference was in the world of art and creation, where the inner child is respected as a source of energy, life, and creativity.
“No,” I said, “I don’t want my inner child to have to grow up. When I get in some situation where the little girl inside is angry or scared, I can listen to her and understand how she feels. That way I don’t have to act it out, the way some people do.” We laughed.
When I first started the work, my inner child seemed always sad or angry, but later the creative and joyful spirit came back. Now all the little ones are with me and I’ll always be young inside.
Thanks to Ruth for asking the question.